With online sales rapidly increasing year over year, so are returns: around 30% of all online sales are sent back. This combined with excess inventory woes—faced by many of today’s brick and mortar retailers—is creating a backlog of inventory piling up in warehouses across the country or creating massive losses by being liquidated at very low prices; all of it taking up space and costing money. With tight margins, reduced warehouse space, shorter product lifecycles and sustainability demands, retailers need to think proactively about the handling of and disposition of goods, especially those that can’t go back on shelves.
Nine of the top 10 U.S. retailers—among hundreds of others—are currently leveraging B-Stock’s private, online marketplace platform to sell their returned, excess and other liquidation merchandise to vetted business buyers across the globe. Think of it like your own storefront to sell b-stock goods. These marketplaces allow for higher recovery, a faster sales cycle (vs selling to a jobber), and total control over how your merchandise enters the secondary market. Here’s how it works:
When done right, liquidation can offset substantial loss for returned or excess inventory. By setting up an online auction marketplace where targeted buyers bid against each other to buy your merchandise, price and recovery go up because it cuts out middlemen and their markups as well as the significant logistics costs associated with extra shipping and handling that selling to those liquidators requires. Read how a global ecommerce company doubled pricing on its returned and excess inventory.
B-Stock’s existing buyer network consists of vetted, professional resellers who need to source inventory for their own business. B-Stock runs targeted, demand generation campaigns to attract secondary market buyers to your marketplace. What’s more, retailers can control who is allowed to bid and who is not. Want to sell only to certain buyers you already know, no problem. Want to limit liquidation sales to foreign buyers or exporters to ensure this excess inventory doesn’t compete with your existing sales channels, no problem. Discover a buyer is violating your terms of sale, no problem, ban them with a click. Need a de-labeling program executed, no problem.
B-Stock’s platform allows you to move inventory as needed – regardless of volume, time of year, or product category. With a large buyer base, made up of the right buyers, there is always demand. If you could reduce your sales cycle from 40 to 17 days, what kind of impact would that have on your bottom line? Building liquidation into your business process means you never experience an end of quarter fire drill to move a huge quantity of inventory off the books and out of the warehouse at fire sale prices. Check out this client success story on how B-Stock helped a retailer support its consolidation goals.
By automating your liquidation process you’ll improve the operational efficiency of your liquidation program. This means no more negotiating over the phone with your local liquidator or manual work to prepare manifests or process orders.
Online Auction Dynamic
The auction dynamic results in higher pricing; it also creates a sense of urgency and excitement. Many bidders get caught up in the idea of, ‘Just one more bid’ and as a result, retailers achieve the best pricing possible for their inventory. Another benefit is that every buyer ‘named her price.’ Almost by definition, they feel good about what they paid since it was their choice.
Our data shows that the smallest adjustments can drive substantially better results month after month. Lot optimization, low start prices, accurate manifests, targeted marketing and more all contribute to better pricing. This is where working with a company that has years of online marketplace and auction experience—and years of compiled data—can make a big difference.
Ready to take your liquidation program to the next level?